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2015 National Architecture Awards: Commercial

Equestrian Centre, Merricks by Seth Stein Architects (London) in association with Watson Architecture + Design (Melbourne) Commercial Architecture: National Commendation Australian Institute of Architects

Jury citation

Equestrian Centre at Merricks on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula successfully expresses the client’s dedication to the development of specialized skills associated with breeding, caring for and training pedigree eventing horses. Beautiful siting, impressive detail precision, a simple but rich materials palette and seamless construction engineering create a supportive environment for the presentation and training of eventing horses and their day-to-day care.

The gently curved building is anchored into its site by massive rammed earth walls, which turn the building’s southern back to face the weather. The composition includes a graceful, curving zinc-clad roof (with not a single penetration), a water fountain and pool (that is a respectful nod to Luis Barragán’s masterwork), and meticulous detailing of the timber framing and spotted gum cladding. Walking into these grounds, one is immediately aware of the prestige associated with the sport and the calibre of the horses that reside here. This is a commendable example of architecture that presents equine business in such a sophisticated and elegant light.


Seth Stein Architects
London, United Kingdom
Project Team
Robert Watson, Seth Stein (design architects); Tim Sidebottom, Nico Warr (documentation)
Watson Architecture + Design
East Melbourne, Melbourne, Vic, Australia
Builder B2D Constructions
Building surveyor Nepean Building Permits
Electrical consultant WSP Group
Structural consultant Perrett Simpson Stantin
Site details
Category Commercial / public buildings
Project Details
Status Built



Published online: 5 Nov 2015
Words: National Architecture Awards Jury 2015
Images: Lisbeth Grosmann


Architecture Australia, November 2015

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